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psychodermatology, psychocutaneous disease, delusions of parasitosis, delusional infestation
Many patients with delusions of parasitosis (DoP) prefer to be managed by dermatologists rather than mental health professionals (MHPs). While some patients with DoP can be managed by dermatologists, others must be referred to MHPs. The purpose of this article is to assist dermatologists in determining when to refer their DoP patients to a MHP. We propose 3 criteria for making this determination: whether the delusion is primary or secondary, whether the delusion is encapsulated and realistic or global and bizarre, and the patient’s degree of delusional intensity. Patients with secondary DoP, delusion that is global and bizarre, and DoP with a high degree of delusional intensity should be referred to a MHP.
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